There are more than 3 million hectares of reserve land across Canada. The land base of First Nations continues to increase as land claims are settled and implemented and lands are added to reserves as part of Canada's commitment to addressing historical injustices.
The Government of Canada recognizes the cultural, historical, social, political and spiritual aspects of land. At the same time, economic development of First Nations' substantial and growing land and natural resource base can greatly improve the well-being and quality of life for Aboriginal people in Canada.
Laws and regulations, such as the Indian Act, and deficits in community and institutional capacity are impediments to developing the land and natural resource base.
The Government of Canada will work with Aboriginal people in Canada and other partners to remove legislative and regulatory barriers to economic development, provide Aboriginal Canadians with greater access to and control of their lands, build greater capacity in economic development institutions and support commercial infrastructure.
The outcome will be opportunity ready Aboriginal communities that have stable, efficient and predictable investment climates attractive to business and investors.
Indigenous and Nortehern Affairs Canada (INAC) and First Nations work together to increase First Nation involvement in management of their lands and natural resources. As a result, strong partnerships among First Nations, governments and the private sector are emerging to bring opportunities for prosperity and a more promising future for First Nations and all Canadians.
First Nations' land base is growing. More than 3.5 million hectares in Canada are now First Nations' lands. The Land Base Statistics document provides statistics, including Indian Act land, land under the FNLM regime, and Self-Governing First Nations' land.
What Information is Available?
In this section, find information on how INAC works in partnership with First Nations on land management, including:
- Frequently Asked Questions - Amendments to the Land Designation Sections of the Indian Act and related regulations
- Land Management under the Indian Act
- Additions to Reserves (ATR)
- Land Management Capacity
- First Nations Land Management Regime
- First Nations Commercial and Industrial Development Act (FNCIDA)
- Land Registration
- Service Standards for High-Volume Regulatory Authorizations
For questions related to lands, contact the INAC regional office nearest you. To find INAC personnel working in lands and economic development at INAC headquarters in Ottawa, use the Government Electronic Services Directory.
- Land Management Manual: Provides technical information, procedures and policies used to manage reserve land.
- Historical Land Sale Records: Consisting of Letters Patents pertaining to lands which have been surrendered for absolute sale by Indian Bands.
- Netlands: Designed for managing land transaction projects on reserve lands, available to INAC personnel and First Nation land managers. Access can be requested through the Helpdesk at 1-866-795-6465.
- Federal Framework on Aboriginal Economic Development
- The Report on Plans and Priorities (includes a Strategic Outcome on The Land and Economy.)
- Land Claims
- Treaty Land Entitlement
- Historic Treaties
- Matrimonial Real Property
- Indian Oil and Gas Canada
- Locatee Lease Policy and Directive
- Designation and Surrender: Interim Bulletin for Chapter 5, Land Management Manual
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